THE WEEKEND REVIEW
Manchester Derby does not reveal anything new…
The Manchester derby over the weekend was only a further reminder that Manchester City is miles ahead of Manchester United (and the rest of the league) with the ease in which they brushed the Red Devils aside. Admittedly, Manchester United did not have their second most influential player on the pitch in Paul Pogba (the first is obviously De Gea) thereby devoid of any form of creativity in the middle third. However, Manchester City duly took advantage and were mostly in control except the very brief period after Manchester United converted from the spot. Ultimately, it was an easy victory for the blue side of Manchester and you just wonder who can stop them this season. Will they go unbeaten?
On the other side, Manchester United need to be able to start and finish games on a high and not only come to life in bursts. They did the same against Bournemouth, Juventus (and won). They were not lucky the third time.
Juventus in control once again…
For the umpteenth time in the Serie A, Juventus come good on the big stage. The game may have turned out different had Gonzalo Higuain not missed his spot kick. In as much as we want to have discussions that the Serie A is still very competitive, the reality is that nobody is stopping Juventus in this Serie A. Not Napoli, not Inter Milan and definitely not AC Milan.
Dortmund-Bayern serve up a classic German Derby..
The pressure was obviously on Bayern Munich in this encounter. If they needed to make a statement, it was this game. Sadly, it was not to be. It seems that the wise (and old) Bayern team does not have the legs to sustain their intensity for a whole game, let alone a whole season. They are now seven points adrift of the League leaders. Do they still have the legs to catch up?
Barcelona not getting any better…Real Madrid in good form
Barcelona contrived to let in four goals at home to Real Betis, something that has not happened in a long while. It seems that Umtiti’s injury has (sort of) coincided with this run of defensive frailties and no one at the back seems to be taking responsibility. It is also rather ironic that Barcelona had been winning games without Lionel Messi and they then go on to lose (at home!) in his first start in over a month.
As for Real Madrid, going away to Celta Vigo, scoring four goals and ultimately coming away with the three points is really commendable. Also, it seems that Santiago Solari is willing to integrate his younger players with the older heads and the results have been good so far- let’s hope that he can develop another Ronaldo, for Real Madrid’s sake.
Considering the fact that only a couple of weeks ago, when the El Clasico was played, Real Madrid was ultimately ruled out of the title race. Now, they are only four points behind. The League is wide open. Real Madrid is not out yet.
Tottenham keep getting points on the road..
Tottenham is currently five points behind Manchester City in the title race and just keep raking in massive points on the road (that’s seven wins in eight on the road now), Juan Foyth- who cost two penalties against Wolverampton Wanderers last weekend that did not ultimately cost them last weekend- getting the only goal of the game over the weekend. You get the feeling that they prefer going on the road and the Wembley pitch has recently not been a great venue for football. Considering that they actually spent zero pounds in transfers last summer, they are really pulling above their weight.
Posted by: Abiodun Motunrayo
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